Minor fire breaks out at Dodger Stadium
Fans ordered to evacuate Reserve Deck in fifth inning
LOS ANGELES -- A section of the Dodger Stadium Reserve Deck was evacuated during the fifth inning of Saturday night's 6-1 loss to the Marlins because of a minor fire that broke out in a food vendor warehouse.
Fans were ordered out of the section above first base and down the right-field line as smoke wafted over the playing field. Meanwhile, the game continued with the Marlins leading, 3-1.
After the top of the sixth inning, a public-address announcement informed fans of the fire, calling it "small" in a "contained area" and "under control" by the Los Angeles Fire Department, assuring fans there was no need for further evacuations.
After the game, the Dodgers issued this statement:
Tonight at Dodger Stadium there was a small fire in a warehouse on the eighth floor that was immediately contained and extinguished.
The Los Angeles Fire Department was on the scene immediately and Dodger staff relocated fans from the first-base side of the top deck and reserve level to the third-base side in an orderly and timely manner.
The game against the Florida Marlins continued without delay. Tomorrow's game will not be impacted by the incident.
Dodgers getting healthier as summer rolls in
LOS ANGELES -- Things are looking up for Dodgers manager Don Mattingly when he talks about players coming off the disabled list, instead of going on it.
Outfielder Marcus Thames, out since May 3 with an aggravated quad muscle that bothered him since Spring Training, begins a Minor League rehab assignment Sunday at Triple-A Albuquerque.
Pitcher Vicente Padilla, out since May 14 with irritation in the radial nerve that was operated on in February, begins a rehab assignment Sunday at Class A Rancho Cucamonga.
Rafael Furcal is back in body, if not in performance yet (1-for-22 since returning from a broken thumb). Casey Blake returned Friday night from a staph-infected elbow.
Closer Jonathan Broxton is throwing hard on flat ground and could graduate to a mound next week, with bullpen sessions likely during the next trip.
Juan Uribe isn't running yet because of a strained abdominal muscle, but he could begin a rehab assignment in a week.
Mattingly said he was looking forward to the added bench experience resulting from the return of healthy veterans. He said he would work Thames and his power bat back into the starting rotation in left field, which will become a crowded place with Jay Gibbons, Jerry Sands and Tony Gwynn already sharing the position.
At first, Mattingly first said Sands could see action at first base and occasionally in right field, but he hesitated when asked if there was a possibility that Thames' return would necessitate Sands' return to Triple-A.
"I can't say there's no possibility of anything," Mattingly said. "There are decisions we'll have to make as guys get healthy."
Mattingly staying the course with Furcal
LOS ANGELES -- There's no argument that, in hindsight, the Dodgers rushed Rafael Furcal back into action before he was ready.
But manager Don Mattingly said he's all in with Furcal and there's no turning back.
"I feel like Fukey is going to get it going," Mattingly said of his shortstop, who is 3-for-26 since returning from a broken left thumb. "He's not as sharp as he's going to be."
Mattingly said Furcal is essentially starting his season over. He had only 18 at-bats in a Minor League rehab assignment, which was cut short when he bruised a knee. Instead of continuing the assignment, Furcal was activated when infielder Juan Castro was disabled last weekend.
"We wanted him to get more at-bats down there, but it just didn't work out," Mattingly said. "I feel bad for him. He gets down when he's not having success. I have no fear about Raffy when his timing comes. It's on the way. It's a matter of getting his timing back and the rust off. Unfortunately, it's happening here."
Hawksworth may have slight tear in right hip
LOS ANGELES -- Disabled Dodgers reliever Blake Hawksworth said he might have a slight labral tear in his right hip, but doctors believe he can pitch with the condition.
"They're convinced it doesn't need surgery or any drastic procedure," Hawksworth said. "I'm planning on being back in 15 days."
Hawksworth has a history of groin issues, which are often actually referred pain from hip impingements. It acted up again Wednesday night during a second Minor League rehab appearance with Class A Rancho Cucamonga.
An MRI using gadolinium dye on Friday revealed the tear, which doctors told him can probably be found in the hips of many pitchers. Hawksworth will utilize different stretching and strengthening exercises in an attempt to mitigate the impingement.
"The hip is something you can't change. You're talking bone and things of that nature," Hawksworth said. "Now we know there's something there."
Hawksworth said he also received a cortisone injection just in case there is also a strain of the groin, which was the original suspicion.
Dodgers to sign autographs for tornado relief
LOS ANGELES -- Manager Don Mattingly and many of the Dodgers players will be signing autographs for fans at Sunday's game against the Marlins to raise funds and awareness for tornado relief efforts in Joplin, Mo., with proceeds going to the Salvation Army.
Reliever Scott Elbert, originally from Joplin, will lead the player contingent, which includes Ted Lilly, Chad Billingsley, Matt Guerrier, Kenley Jansen, Javy Guerra, Mike MacDougal and Ramon Troncoso.
The autograph session, part of the Viva Los Dodgers Day, will take place in parking lot 6 from 11:30 a.m. PT until 12:15 p.m.
A $5 donation is encouraged, and cash and checks will be accepted. Checks should be made out to "The Salvation Army Disaster Relief."
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.